• squamous cell carcinoma;
  • paranasal sinus;
  • incidence and survival of sinonasal cancers


Paranasal sinus squamous cell carcinomas (PNSSCC) account for 3% of all head and neck malignancies. There has been little information on the trends in incidence and survival, and no randomized trials have been conducted to guide therapy.


Patients with PNSSCC reported to the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program from 1973 through 2009 were categorized by sex, age, year of diagnosis, primary site, stage, and treatment. The incidence and survival were then compared across different demographic and disease-related categories by calculating rate ratios (RRs) and mortality hazard ratios along with the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs).


In total, 2553 patients with PNSSCC were identified. While incidence of PNSSCC showed a gradual decline, survival remained largely unchanged. The proportion of patients with advanced disease decreased from 14.7% during the period from 1983 to 1992 to 12.4% during 1993-2002 and to 9.5% during 2003-2009. Compared with whites, incidence was higher among African Americans (RR 1.63; 95% CI, 1.39, 1.90) and among all other racial groups (RR, 1.78; 95% CI: 1.53-2.07). After adjusting for age, sex, disease stage, tumor site, and treatment, mortality among African American patients also was increased (hazard ratio, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.04-1.43). Among patients with localized disease, the relation between race and mortality was no longer evident once the results were controlled for tumor classification.


The current findings point to racial disparities in the incidence of PNSSCC and, to a lesser extent, in the outcome of patients with PNSSCC. Although there has been a decline in the proportion of patients presenting with advanced PNSSCC, the overall survival remained stable over time. Cancer 2013;119:2602–2610. © 2013 American Cancer Society.